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German football team’s 14-hour trip home after plane problem


Hansi Flick, new head coach of the German national football team, talks to his players during a training session of Germany’s national football team in Stuttgart, southern Germany, September 1, 2021. — AFP pic
Hansi Flick, new head coach of the German national football team, talks to his players during a training session of Germany’s national football team in Stuttgart, southern Germany, September 1, 2021. — AFP pic

BERLIN, Sept 9 — Following a 14-hour journey, the German football team finally arrived in Frankfurt today after the plane returning them from a World Cup qualifier in Iceland had to make an unexpected landing in Edinburgh.

Germany cruised to a 4-0 win in Reykjavik yesterday to go four-points clear at the top of their qualifying group.

However, some of the squad endured an odyssey on the flight home after their plane developed a technical problem and had to detour to Edinburgh airport, leading to a lengthy delay.

Having initially left Reykjavik just after midnight this morning, the exhausted German squad finally touched down in Frankfurt at 1530 local time (1330GMT).

“Landed in Frankfurt, some of the squad heading directly now to Munich,” the German Football Association DFB tweeted this afternoon.

A spokesperson for Lithuanian charter airline KlasJet told AFP subsidiary SID that a possibly defective power generator on the plane was behind the unplanned stopover on the flight from Iceland.

After landing in the Scottish capital, the plane was checked over, but the players endured a lengthy delay while a replacement aircraft flew to Edinburgh to bring them home.

DFB co-interim president Rainer Koch said “it was neither a spectacular nor an emergency landing. You couldn’t be scared at all because the announcement came just before landing that there was going to be a stop for maintenance.

“I was just surprised that I could suddenly see the houses so clearly.”

According to reports not all of the squad were on board.

Germany captain Manuel Neuer, Serge Gnabry and Joshua Kimmich had opted to return separately to their club Bayern Munich.

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Premier League players Timo Werner, Ilkay Guendogan, Antonio Ruediger, Bernd Leno and Kai Havertz had also returned to their English clubs. — AFP



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